Time and again, German or Austrian media report on a disproportionately high share of migrants in Corona hospitals or intensive care patients (about 60 per cent). Only a fortnight ago, Gottfried Waldhäusl, Lower Austria’s regional councillor for asylum, declared on Facebook that more than 50 percent of Corona patients have a migration background, which drew massive criticism from the usual circles. Also the internet portal unzensuriert reported extensively on the topic in March. There are many reasons for this – for example, lack of education, lack of language skills, no interest in local regulations, small flats, low percentage of home-based work, poverty. In German clinics there is already a special (unofficial) term for such cases: “patients with communication blockade”.
Now a new (but not surprising) factor has been added – Ramadan, which has been taking place since April 13. Until May 12, devout Muslims have to fast during the day. In the evening, the so-called breaking of the fast takes place, usually in larger company (not only with family members). Using the example of Tyrol, where the infection figures are currently rising particularly strongly, the newspaper Kronen Zeitung has now shown that there is a direct connection between Ramadan and the situation in the covid wards of the hospitals.
As doctors assure (in secret), the Covid patients are mostly Muslims who practise Ramadan. This is also reflected in the official Corona figures in the country: these are highest in those municipalities where particularly many Muslims live, for example in Innsbruck (502 active cases), Kufstein (119), Telfs (99) and Reutte 50) – as of Monday evening.
Medical experts are particularly concerned about the three-day final fast at the end of Ramadan. After that, a renewed sharp increase in new infections is feared.On the part of the respective hospital operators, they justify not addressing the problem by pointing out that they do not collect data on the patients’ religious affiliation. It is not yet known whether and what measures the state government will take.
The fact that, due to the prevailing “politically correct” ideology, any reference to migrants as potential source of infection is immediately dismissed as “racism” or “right-wing extremism”, no matter what the facts are, is certainly an obstacle. This makes a factual discussion or the implementation of effective countermeasures almost impossible.